He first bought in Beverly Hills in 2016, then moved up to Bel Air.
When Jay Stein decided to retire as Stein Mart Inc.’s CEO at age 70 in March 2016, the business hadn’t substantially begun its decline and COVID-19 was nearly four years from being the daily headline that would seal the national department store chain’s demise.
Stein and his wife, Deanie, decided to at least partially relocate from Jacksonville to Los Angeles.
Not just any part of Los Angeles – Beverly Hills.
They paid $22.5 million for an 8,400-square-foot, six-bedroom, six-bath, single-story home on 0.77 acres in the Trousdale Estates section of Beverly Hills near the Santa Monica Mountains.
It was built on the site of a home once owned by comedian Morey Amsterdam, who played Buddy Sorrell on “The Dick Van Dyke Show” from 1961-66. Amsterdam died in 1996 and his heirs sold the property in 2012 to a group of investors who demolished Amsterdam’s home and built the new home the Steins purchased.
The Steins moved much of their art collection into their new home, and the Steins soon established themselves in the LA philanthropic community.
According to causeiq.com, the Jay and Deanie Stein Foundation Trust donated $110,500 to the Los Angeles Philharmonic and $50,000 each to Teatro de la Opera, Camp Hess Kramer and Stephen S. Wise Temple in Los Angeles.
Three years later, the Steins listed the Trousdale property for $29.5 million and looked for property in Bel Air.
In June 2019, the Steins purchased for $31 million the 13,361-square-foot, two-story, Mediterranean-style mansion built in 1931 for film producer Sol Wurtzel.
It most recently was owned by the late William J. Bell, the Emmy Award-winning producer and co-creator of the television dramas “The Young and the Restless” and “The Bold and the Beautiful.”
The home has five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, separate guest and staff quarters, terraces, a spa, screening room, loggias, formal gardens and a tennis court on the gated 1.5-acre estate on Bellagio Road.
In an article published July 26, 2019, in the Los Angeles Times, the transaction was described as the top June private home sale in Los Angeles County.
Other Bel Air homeowners include actor Jennifer Aniston, actor and director Clint Eastwood, performers Beyonce and Jay-Z, investment banker and U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Tesla Inc. and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk.
Stein, now 74, remained as chairman of the board of Stein Mart, a position he held from 1989, until June.
The Steins’ Jacksonville home along the St. Johns River, at 4470 W. Worth Drive in the Miramar-Lakewood area is listed for $5.2 million by Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Network Realty.
It is marketed as a seven-bedroom, nine-bathroom, 11,625-square-foot single-family residence built in 1948. Property records show it sits on 2.78 acres.
In July, Stein was Stein Mart Inc.’s largest shareholder with 17.3 million shares. On Aug. 12, the retailer declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy with the Stein family holding 37.5% of the company’s stock.
On Aug. 17, Stein Mart stock closed at 15 cents.